Letter: Having the Catalog Show in April Would Fit Fall Mailing Season Better

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After last year's catalog show, one marked by poor exhibit hall traffic, we polled our clients about how they would feel if we stopped exhibiting. We received unanimous approval from them not to exhibit. For those companies that continue exhibiting, next year offers an added element with which to contend: DM Days and the catalog show in the same week ("Catalog, DM Days Go Head to Head in '03," June 17).

June has become far too busy of a planning month for many catalogers to be able to send the amount of staff to the catalog show as they had in years past. Additionally, much of the information that is culled, and learning that is achieved, at the catalog show happens too late to be fully employed for fall and holiday mailings.

With the demise of the spring DMA show, conflicted scheduling with DM Days and continued poor exhibit hall attendance, surely many mailers and list professionals would welcome a date change.

As we did last year with our booth poll, I informally polled clients and colleagues at this year's catalog show on how they would feel about holding the show in mid- to late April, when mailers aren't as busy and could begin planning for crucial fall and holiday mailings well in advance of their current timetables. The suggestion of moving the date to April received overwhelming support.

The opportunity to receive recommendations and insights from colleagues and list professionals in meetings and during sessions well in advance of cut-off dates would surely benefit mailers and exhibitors, and, perhaps, additional time to plan for the most important mail dates of the year would help our industry in the form of better results, better performing prospect lists and, ultimately, larger house files.

Brian DeLaite, Vice president, list management ALC of New York, New York



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